No doubt many people might remember the words the “Sweetest Music This Side of Heaven” from “The Guy Lombardo Show.”
Well, more good music can be heard this weekend in Mathiston in Webster County, an area of many gospel singers past and present.
After a little over a year of planning, the William Golden Memorial Singing will be this Saturday, Aug. 25, at Victory Baptist Church on Highway 15 South.
This is the first-ever memorial singing for Golden, who was born William Golding and later changed the spelling to “Golden.” Born in Webster County in 1878 and killed in a car wreck in 1934, Golden is buried in nearby Spring Valley Cemetery.
In addition to attending singings in the area, Golden wrote many songs that have been recorded by many gospel groups, such as "A Beautiful Life," "Those Lonely Tombs" and many others.
Saturday’s memorial singing begins at 10 a.m. with a break at noon for a potluck lunch. The singing will continue afterwards. This will be all-day convention singing, and many gospel songbook publishers will be on hand from different states to use their books.
All present will be given a chance to lead a song when called on to do so, and it is hoped some groups will sing special songs.
It is expected that some people will be present who have served as president of their state gospel singing conventions, and even a few who have been president of the National Gospel Singing Convention. These include Crandall Woodson from Georgia, who was born in Sturgis in Oktibbeha County and who will be president of the next convention to be held in Georgia in November.
Anyone interested can search William Golden’s name, birth and death information on the website www.findagrave.com
(or Google "William Golden Mississippi gospel songwriter" for a link) and view a photo of Golden's monument at Spring Valley Cemetery that was posted on the site by Tom Childers, a one-time Church of Christ pastor from Mathiston now living in Tennessee.